No Good Options: Fighting diagnostic and treatment challenges for women with endometriosis

by Emily Poulin figures by Brad Wierbowski “Have you heard of endometriosis?” As a scientist and a woman, I was embarrassed to say that I hadn’t. Although I had seen two doctors about my pelvic pain, it was a friend who first mentioned endometriosis to me. My reaction turns out to be pretty common. Although endometriosis affects about ten percent of women, many have never … Continue reading No Good Options: Fighting diagnostic and treatment challenges for women with endometriosis

May 16 – Much Ado about Mumps: Using genomics to track virus outbreaks in Massachusetts and beyond

Time: 7-9 p.m., Wednesday, May 16th Location: Pfizer Hall, Mallinckrodt Chemistry Labs, 12 Oxford St, Cambridge (link to directions) Speakers: Shirlee Wohl After decades of decline, mumps — once a ubiquitous childhood illness — is on the rise again. In this lecture, we’ll focus on the recent mumps outbreak right here in Massachusetts and learn about why mumps is back, why vaccinated people are getting sick, and how … Continue reading May 16 – Much Ado about Mumps: Using genomics to track virus outbreaks in Massachusetts and beyond

You Asked: How are pets different from wild animals?

by Katherine J. Wu The pets in our households are all descendants of wild animals, many of which still run free today. But dogs, cats, and rodents are all domesticated to varying degrees, with a wide range of consequences for their behavior and genetics. To understand the nitty gritty of this, let’s get some terminology out of the way first. When we discuss domestication, we’re … Continue reading You Asked: How are pets different from wild animals?

Dopamine, Smartphones & You: A battle for your time

by Trevor Haynes figures by Rebecca Clements “I feel tremendous guilt,” admitted Chamath Palihapitiya, former Vice President of User Growth at Facebook, to an audience of Stanford students. He was responding to a question about his involvement in exploiting consumer behavior. “The short-term, dopamine-driven feedback loops that we have created are destroying how society works,” he explained. In Palihapitiya’s talk, he highlighted something most of … Continue reading Dopamine, Smartphones & You: A battle for your time

Episode 12: Urban Planning for a Changing Climate

Amidst talk about the Paris climate accord and other multinational efforts to combat climate change, it’s easy to lose sight of the extensive efforts occurring at the city and state levels to plan for and preempt the effects of environmental changes. To celebrate Earth Day 2018, we’re taking a look at some of the strategies local communities are adopting to address the challenges climate change … Continue reading Episode 12: Urban Planning for a Changing Climate

May 2 – “Super Black” Birds, Spiders, and Snakes

Time: 7-9 p.m., Wednesday, May 2nd Location: Pfizer Hall, Mallinckrodt Chemistry Labs, 12 Oxford St, Cambridge (link to directions) Speakers: Cody McCoy Incredibly dark, velvety, super-black surfaces have evolved many times in nature. What makes them so black, why did they evolve, and can engineers learn something from them? Continue reading May 2 – “Super Black” Birds, Spiders, and Snakes

The Most Widely Used Pesticide, One Year Later

by Xindi (Cindy) Hu figures by Lillian Horin In March 2017, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) decided not to ban Chlorpyrifos, a widely used pesticide. One year later, in February 2018, a bill was introduced in Hawaii to ban the manufacturing, distribution, and use of chlorpyrifos across all Hawaiian islands. Hawaii House Rep Richard Creagan said the legislation was prompted by the inaction in … Continue reading The Most Widely Used Pesticide, One Year Later